The Federal Council of Churches of Christ in America votes to permit the "careful and restrained" use of birth control by married couples. The Federal Council of Churches of Christ in America has representatives from 27 American Protestant churches with over 23 million members.
The question of contraceptive birth control has been studied by the group for the past several years and the 28-member committee on marriage votes overwhelmingly to approve this measure. According to the report:
"The majority of the committee holds that the careful and restrained sue of contraceptives by married people is valid and moral. But they cannot leave this statement without further comment.
They feel obliged to point out that present knowledge of birth control is incomplete, and that an element of uncertainty, although small, still remains.
More serious is the fact that all methods are as yet more or less subject to personal factors for their effectiveness. ... there can be no question as to the necessity for some sort of effective control of the size of the family and the spacing of children"
Margaret Sanger responds:
"This is a document of the new age. Today is a most significant one in the history of the birth control movement.
Today for the first time a large representative group of churchmen and women have gone on record as being aware of the tremendous mass of scientific information which we possess, medical, sociological, and psychological, and have applied it directly to the important question of the sex relation between married people."
Rev. Homer Lewis Sheffer of the Unitarian Church in Oklahoma City says:
"The Federal Council in approving birth control is bringing the church up-to-date. The pity of it is that the church always lags behind in great moral movements.
Unitarians already have gone on record in support of this humane and constructive attitude towards sex."
The news is not welcomed everywhere. Archbishop Michael J. Murley of the Catholic Archdiocese of Maryland, responds:
"The approval of birth control by contraception, announced by the Federal Council of Churches of Christ in America, is a confession of moral bankruptcy."